In the turning and stepping
away from my pastor,
tears were springing to my eyes.
A dusted grey cross
marked my bowed forehead
and a soul deep humility
marked my heart.
Return to the Lord, your God,
for He is gracious and merciful.
Joel 2: 13
The Spirit within pulsed, swelled,
and joy erupted in warmth
across my face.
A candle lit sanctuary,
hushed in the sacred of forgiving,
veiled the emotion of communion
between God’s spirit
and this grateful heart.
Then God made you alive with Christ.
He forgave all our sins.
He canceled the record
that contained the charges
He took it and destroyed it
by nailing it to Christ's cross.
through the measured, steady pace
back to the rows of pews,
I sensed the streaming pilgrimage
of so many all around me.
Moving in turn, to receive the same mark
scrawled across a bowed head.
Were tears welling up,
and hearts swelling up,
all along these aisles?
Once seated, did hands like mine,
reach for Bibles to scour for favorite
Psalms of remorse and praising?
Were ashes giving way to beauty?
This post was already written when the Inbox revealed Emily’s exquisite post. Visit her at Imperfect Prose. She has much to share about the work of ashes.
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